It’s already turning out to be one of those seasons for West Ham United where it seems the world is against them.
West Ham fans could see it coming ever since their horror fixture list was unveiled in August.
Fears of a difficult start were confirmed by back-to-back Premier League defeats to usher in an already miserable new season.
There is unrest among players and fans, a rift in the boardroom and takeover talk has enveloped the club before disappearing as quickly as it came.
Serious looking injury to scupper any West Ham move for Henry?
There have been no new signings while young academy star Grady Diangana was sold to relegation rivals West Brom.
The manager David Moyes and two players – Issa Diop and Josh Cullen – are now missing for at least another week after testing positive for Covid-19.
Unpopular co-owner David Sullivan and vice-chairman Karren Brady have been busy embarrassing and infuriating supporters in equal measure by washing the club’s dirty in public with their interviews and columns.
Indeed Sullivan put the icing on the cake by telling West Ham fans there may well be no new arrivals come the close of the window.
Well there was more gloom for Hammers fans on Saturday.
First reported left-back target Rico Henry (Claret & Hugh) was forced off after just three minutes of Brentford’s draw with Millwall with what looks a serious injury.
Eze shines, just as Hammers fans knew he would
Henry could be out for some time and that surely puts any potential West Ham move in doubt.
Then all eyes were on Crystal Palace’s match with Everton and a Premier League debut for the one that got away Eberechi Eze.
The midfield playmaker was reportedly Moyes’s prime target over the summer (Evening Standard).
But he ended up signing for Palace instead for just £16million.
Eze impressed for the Eagles and looked exactly the sort of player West Ham are missing. Especially with Manuel Lanzini and Felipe Anderson a shadow of their former selves.
Palace lost the game 2-1. But Eze was a prominent figure throughout, looking every bit a Premier League star in the making.
Diangana drives the dagger deeper
Then it was over to the Hawthorns to see how Diangana got on against Chelsea.
The young attacker caused another West Ham backlash against the owners last weekend. He scored a somewhat inevitable wonder goal for West Brom against Everton.
And he was at it again on Saturday evening. Grady shone against West Ham’s London rivals. He gave Reece James and Marcos Alonso a torrid time – especially in the first half – as the Baggies raced into a shock 3-0 lead.
Diangana was so good he played a big part in Frank Lampard’s decision to haul off Alonso at half-time. And he did his fair share of defending too, running himself into the ground before being replaced late on.
After coming off West Brom fell apart and ended up drawing 3-3 at the death.
The only bright spot for West Ham this season has been progress in the Carabao Cup – twice at the expense of League One opposition.
But even that could be shortlived with Everton awaiting at Goodison Park next week.
The life of a West Ham fan ladies and gentlemen.